Former Washington State running back Jermaine Green possessed the kind of talent that can carry a man through 12 years in the National Football League. Green never played a down in the NFL, and now he faces 12 years in prison.
Ten years after playing in the 2003 Rose Bowl, Green was caught on police video holding a knife to the throat of his girlfriend. On Tuesday, in his hometown of Daytona Beach, FL., Green was sentenced after pleading no contest to kidnapping and aggravated battery charges.
Green, who was shot four times after refusing orders to drop the knife during the 2013 incident in Daytona Beach, faced up to life in prison. The Dayton Beach News-Journal said Green apologized during the sentencing hearing to his parents, the community, his teachers and coaches.
“I made a life-changing decision that night,” Green said as he sat handcuffed to a wheelchair and dressed in an orange jail jumpsuit. “It was my fault. I put Ms. Johnson, the Daytona Beach Police Department and myself in a very terrifying situation that night and will regret it for the rest of my life.”
Assistant public defender Scott Swain said Green will live with disabilities from the gunshot wounds. Green is 34, according to WSU rosters from his playing days.
Green told the court he used cocaine and alcohol the night of the 2013 incident. The News-Journal reported later that year that Daytona Beach police said Green was arrested 20 times from 2005-13.
Green, a junior college transfer, led the 2002 Cougars in rushing with 829 yards and nine touchdowns. He struggled with injuries as a senior in 2003 and was suspended prior to the final two games (the Apple Cup against Washington and the Holiday Bowl against Texas). The Cougars never gave a specific reason for the suspension, but Green said he was suspended for missing a practice when he overslept after making a mistake setting his alarm clock.
Green, speedy and powerful, was listed at 6 feet and 220 pounds at WSU. He tried out with the NFL’s New York Giants as an undrafted free agent in 2004, but never appeared in a game.